Sean Penn has been actively trying to rebuild the country of Haiti to try and get it back and running since the devastating earthquake. And while many have applauded the actor’s efforts in the third-world country, others are critical.
Penn spoke with CBSprogram Sunday Morning, and defended himself against the critics. Sean says he decided to help the people of Haiti after his businesswoman friend Diana Jenkins gave him money. “I just ran into her at a cocktail party, and said… what I was intending to do,” he explains. “And so, she decided to support it. Did Diana just say, ‘Here’s a million bucks?’ Yeah. We were able to just say yes, yes, yes on things, and we were able to get X-ray machines, and ventilators, and do all kinds of things… I was just able to make decisions and bring things in.”
Sean says he’s actually given so much money that “I’d better get a job soon.” He’s also brought his 16-year-old son Hopper Jack and 18-year-old daughter Dylan with him to help.
“No, they’re not on the sightseeing tour. Oh, they’re gonna help. They’re gonna be my slaves while we’re there,” Sean jokes. “You bet they’re gonna help.”
“I think that they’ve had the experience, as I have, that the first person served by service is the server,” he explains. “You know, there’s nobody in the world that isn’t looking for a kind of purpose in life, and tangible purpose is the most immediately recognizable. There’s no time that you’re over there, there’s not something to do to lend a hand.”
And to the critics, Sean says he has no time for them. “I guess I’ve been so away from it all — and our tent camp in Haiti that I haven’t had an awful lot of time to pay attention to them. Do I hope that those people die screaming of rectal cancer? Yeah. You know, but I’m not going to spend a lot of energy on it.”
We think it’s a wonderful thing that he’s doing and setting a great example for his children!